Murray’s comeback sealed Qatar’s semi-final berth

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Murray’s comeback sealed Qatar’s semi-final berth


Battle-hardened first world number one Andy Murray made a fresh comeback on Thursday to beat Frenchman Alexandre Muller to a place in the Qatar Open semi-finals and declared himself ready to win another title before retiring.

On Friday, Murray will take on Czech powerhitter Jiri Lehecka, 21, who also came back down to beat Russian top seed Andrey Rublev.

Second seed Felix Auger-Aliassime of Canada is now the tournament favorite after beating Spain’s Alejandro Davidovich-Fokina 6-4, 7-6 (7/5) in the last game of the day.

Auger should win the third pick Danil Medvedev of Russia, who defeated Australian Christopher O’Connell 6-2, 4-6, 7-5. O’Connell needed treatment for a leg he injured while leading in the second set but fought back.

Murray lost the first set 4-6 to Muller. The Englishman broke his 26-year-old opponent’s first serve, then lost two straight games as the Frenchman threatened an upset.

But Murray produced a masterclass to complete the next two 6-1, 6-2 and reach his first ATP semi-final since Stuttgart last June.

He admitted that the first set was “very difficult” and that he needed “more space” in his shots to control it.

Murray had a tough time in Doha, where he is a two-time winner but is a wild card this year.

He saved three points before losing to Italian Lorenzo Sonego in the first round.

Against Germany’s Alexander Zverev, Murray came from two points down in the third set before bouncing back.

The Englishman said he expects to have more difficult matches this year but is confident of his chances against the new generation.

“I want to do some quick games but sometimes it happens this way and I’m sure it won’t continue for the rest of the season.”

He said each win made him more confident.

“I would love to win one (title) but I have goals to achieve more than that, I am putting myself in a position now to do that in the last two games.

“I feel like the last few weeks have been a step in the right direction and if I continue to play and compete like I am now, it won’t be It’s one chance for me to win a championship but I will have more chances to do so in the future. this is the last part of my work.”

His next opponent was Lehecka who got the biggest win of his career by defeating world number five Rublev 4-6, 6-4, 6-3.

“The last two months have been really exciting for me,” said Lehecka, who reached the quarterfinals at the Australian Open in January.

The world number 52, who is due to make a comeback at the event, said he waited to see his opponent’s tactics before rushing his. sports.

“I just want to serve dangerously and quickly in the second set and especially the third set.”

Murray said he watched some of Lehecka’s matches and it was “obvious that he has a great game, he has a great serve”.

“I need to try to find ways to break his rhythm and make it difficult for him.”


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